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Nightly Business Report

News/Business. (2011) Columnist Daniel Gross. (CC) (Stereo)

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00:30:00

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480

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America 4, New City 3, Pfizer 3, New York 3, Darren Gersh 2, Diane Eastabrook 2, Tom Hudson 2, Susie Gharib 2, The Nation 2, Daniel 2, Nordstrom 2, J.p. Morgan 2, Paul La 2, California 2, Washington 2, J.c. Penney 2, Chicago 2, Macy 2, U.s. 2, Us 2,
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  PBS    Nightly Business Report    News/Business.  (2011)  
   Columnist Daniel Gross. (CC) (Stereo)  

    July 8, 2011
    1:00 - 1:30am PDT  

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>> susie: president obama and congressional leaders from both sides of the aisle end a day of debt talks with no deal. >> i want to emphasize that nothing is agreed to until everything's agreed to, and the parties are still far apart on a wide range of issues. >> tom: with taxes, spending and even social security possibly on the table, the president may be negotiating with his own party and the republicans. it's thursday, july 7. this is "nightly business report" with susie gharib and tom hudson. "nightly business report" is made possible by:
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this program is made possible by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. captioning sponsored by wpbt >> tom: good evening and thanks for joining us. "come to the white house on sunday and bring your bottom line." susie, that's the message the president had for congressional leaders today on the negotiations to reduce the deficit. >> susie: after today's meeting, president obama said all sides agree on the need to raise the debt ceiling, but tom, he noted the parties are still far apart on a wide range of issues. >> tom: and on some of those issues, the president may be far apart from his own party. darren gersh reports. >> reporter: after what he called a constructive meeting with congressional leaders, the president declared it was time
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to start the hard bargaining needed to get a deal. >> everybody acknowledged that there's going to be pain involved, politically, on all sides. but our biggest obligation is to make sure that we're doing the right thing by the american people, creating an environment in which we can grow the economy and make sure that more and more people are being put back to work. >> reporter: republican leaders were quiet after the meeting, but just before it, house speaker john boehner once again vowed tax increases are not on the table. >> there's a lot of conversation that's underway, but let's make it clear-- we believe that spending is the problem. we've got to get our spending, in the short and long term, under control. the entitlement programs are important, but if they're not reformed, they won't exist in the future. >> reporter: a key question is just what is on the table.
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the pain the president referred to could include cuts in medicare or changes to the way social security calculates inflation adjustments. but that idea has democrats like house minority leader nancy pelosi in open revolt. >> do not consider social security a piggybank for giving tax cuts to the wealthiest people in our country. we are not going to balance the budget on the backs of america's seniors, women, and people with disabilities. >> reporter: white house spokesman jay carney tried to put out the social security fire, saying all ideas are welcome at the debt limit talks. but he also stressed the president has not changed his position that social security needs to be shored up for the long term. >> social security is not a driver of our short- and medium- term deficits. that, when you are talking about a deficit reduction plan that is addressing just that and is trying to glean up to $4 trillion of savings over ten to 12 years, social security is not a player in that. >> reporter: amid the conflicting signals about where the talks might be heading, steve bell, a former top republican budget staffer, says
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it's now clear big decisions will have to be made soon. >> by putting social security "on the table," the president is sort of calling the g.o.p. bluff. "okay, here is social security. i've told you medicare will be on the table. are you willing to put revenue increases on the table?" >> the white house believes a $4 trillion agreement is within reach. whether it can be reached will become much clearer this weekend. darren gersh, "nightly business report," washington. california is making progress on its rating. standard and poors today raised its outlook for the golden state from negative to stable. the reason, california was able to pass its budget on time, closing what was once a $27 billion gap. here are the stories in tonight's "n.b.r. newswheel." two encouraging reports about the job market-- payroll
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processing firm adp says, by its count, american businesses added 157,000 jobs in june. economists were expecting many fewer. that's encouraging for an upside surprise when the labor department reports june job numbers tomorrow. also, fewer people filed for unemployment benefits last week- - new claims fell by 14,000 to 418,000. that positive jobs news pushed stocks higher. the dow rose 93 points, the nasdaq was up 38, and the s&p 500 added 14. trading volume, up on the big board to 840 million shares; just under 2 billion on the nasdaq. the jobs numbers also pushed oil prices higher. in new york trading, august crude futures rose $2, or 2%, to $98.67 a barrel. and the fed wants the nation's mortgage servicers to figure out a standard way to handle foreclosures. that, as the justice department negotiates a settlement with
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five of the nation's biggest banks over their foreclosure practices. still ahead-- a surprisingly strong june for the nation's retailers. but will cash registers continue ringing up sales into the all important back-to-school season? >> tom: a rare about face for one of the towards biggest media moguls, rupert murdock's news corp. will shut down its british tabloid "news of the world." that paper may not be on your news stand, but it is a best seller in the u. k. with almost 3 million subscribesers. the decision to close it comes after revelations the paper hacked into cell phone voice mails celebrities, royalty, and a teen-age murder victim. pressure has been building with big advertisers like ford and virgin pulling their business. and even the british prime minister calling for an investigation. paul la monica is author of inside rupert's brain, he joins us from new york. so, paul, murdock has never
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been known to back down from controversy. why do you think he did it this time? >> i think it's a calculated gamble that he needs to take, because news corp. is also at the same time trying to convince the british government that it should be allowed to buy the rest of the cable distributor there. it's something that he's been craving for a while. they own a minority stake in it right now, and i think he probably realizes that the last thing that his company needs is a scandal of this magnitude when you're trying to get favor with the government. >> susan: to you think this was a business decision, not necessarily a comment about the ethical standards of journalism within news corp.? >> i doubt it. they're going to talk obviously a good game about how this needed to be done. but it seems a bit of an overreaction, if you will, if you're really upset about the ethical standards, there has to be an editor or two, maybe
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some reporters, heads that can roll, people that have responsibility for this, to shut down an entire newspaper, you know, why punish everyone at that organization for the sins of a few. seems like to me it's something you wouldn't do unless you realize that doing so gives you some sort of benefit, political benefit, financial benefit. >> susan: speaking of financial benefit the tabloids closing will cost about 200 jobs but won't have a financial impact on news corp. for the share holders, the company made 4 billion last year. the newspaper business bringing in 11% of those profits. it's among the mallest of its business segments. so is this closing, how symbolic is this closing? >> i think it's very symbolic. any shareholder that's worried about what this might do really doesn't have much to worry about. it is a tiny piece of a tiny portion of news corp.'s media empire. estimates maybe that it's about a 3% overall piece of
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the profit. it really is not something that's going to hurt the company that much. i joke that if this company was in movies for american idol and american able business, not in the tabloids -- >> tom: but tour earlier point perhaps the end game is to get full control of b. sky b. in britain for the satellite broadcasting, a $19 billion deal, if it is able to get clarify for that deal, what does it mean for news corp. shareholders? >> that would potentially be a nice boost. i think that it is certainly something that any media investor knows right now is something that's very important from the vantage point of news corp.. news corp., like many other media companies, including the parent of time warner, is a challenging environment right now from an advertiser's standpoint, eve 2010 the economy slowly picking up. and the beauty of the satellite is that you get all of these fees that come in
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addition to ad revenue, that's why it's such a lucrative business, not just in the u. k. but around the world. >> tom: paul, we appreciate the insight, thanks for sharing it with us. paul la monica, author of "inside rupert's brain. " >> susie: here in the u.s., a federal appeals court today reinstated a ban on media companies owning both a newspaper and a television station in the same market. the ban applies to the top 20 media markets. the appeals court ruled the federal communications commission did not give the public enough time to comment on the rules that lifted the law. it now wants the agency to go back to the drawing board. meanwhile, the merger between the nyse euronext and the deutsche borse is a big step closer to being a done deal. today, about 75% of big board shareholders signed off on the merger, giving it the two-thirds majority needed to pass. deutsche borse shareholders have until next wednesday to tender their shares. combining the german and u.s. exchanges creates a derivatives trading powerhouse and the
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world's largest exchange operator. >> susie: we keep hearing warnings that consumers are nervous about their jobs and reluctant to spend. well, that wasn't the case in june. most chain stores reported gains much stronger than expected. but part of the strength was due to deep discounting and good weather. thomson reuters' same-store sales index rose a better-than-
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expected 6.5% last month. erika miller looks at whether the strength is likely to continue through the back-to- school season. >> reporter: with the sweltering heat wave sweeping across much of the nation, it's hard to think about sweaters and slacks. but if you trust the message in the june sales results, it could be a strong back-to-school season. only three out of 25 retailers in the thomson same-store sales index missed expectations: j.c. penney, stein mart, and fred's. the other 22 stores beat forecasts, the best showing on record. jharonne martis, the analyst who tracks those numbers, is particularly encouraged by gains in the teen sector. >> we consider the teen index a good proxy of discretionary spending. so the fact that they smashed their estimates of 3.3% and came in at 6.5% shows us that parents are feeling a little bit more comfortable with stretching themsleves. >> reporter: but in spite of the big beats by retailers in june,
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only macy's, t.j. maxx and ross stores boosted their earnings guidance. so the concern is the strong sales may have been rooted in deep discounting, which hurts profits. but analyst brian sozzi believes margins at most stores are improving, thanks, in part, to falling prices for cotton and gas. >> i think what might be setting up-- it's not priced into the stocks yet, but what i call a retail earnings bonanza, where you are seeing the consumer continue to go along slowly, sluggishly, but costs starting to come down. >> reporter: as a result, sozzi expects retail stocks to continue to power higher. his two favorites are nordstrom and wet seal. >> nordstrom-- i like the valuation there. i think they are gaining share even from a saks. the valuation on saks doesn't excite me. on wet seal, their merchandise is very correct. some of the key competitors to wet seal, such as american eagle or aeropostale, their merchandise is not correct. >> reporter: june is typically the second biggest shopping month of the year. but some analysts think july will be a more important barometer of consumer spending. not only is it the start of the back-to-school season, there's also less discounting.
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erika miller, "nightly business report," new york. >> susie: tom, the positive tone that we've been talking about in the market all this week continued today because of those retail sales numbers that erika just told bus, the good numbers on the jobs market. but we have to see what happens tomorrow when the report comes out. >> tom: and some anticipation for decent numbers ahead of tomorrow. we saw that today with the stock price ralies, let's get to it with tonight's "market focus." optimism ahead of tomorrow's jobs data helped push up the major stock indices through out the day. with the 1% gain for the s&p 500, it's the best gain in a week, and puts the index above its late-may high on this 90- session chart. it's about ten points below the
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april high. it was big tech and big banks leading the dow industrials. cisco systems and intel each added more than 2%. j.p. morgan and bank of america added more than 1.5% each. these are your top four performers for the dow today. drug giant pfizer is moving toward focusing on its core business of prescription medicine. it is looking at options for its animal health and nutrition units. but it will keep its generic drug and consumer health businesses. pfizer shares were the most active on the big board, and the biggest loser of the dow today, falling 2.6%. news that it wasn't going to be more aggressive in selling off assets came as a disappointment. pfizer stock is up almost 40% over the past year. the materials sector was also a leader. miner freeport mcmoran jumped almost 4%, pushing up to its
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april high. volume was heavier than usual. union leaders at one of freeport's indonesian mines says production has stopped as thousands of workers continue on strike. that comes on top of bad weather hitting copper production in chile, fueling the stock buying. here's what copper prices have been doing over the past 90 sessions-- the soft patch in mid-april. and copper prices have mirrored stock prices, jumping since the end of june. speaking of metals, here is the past 180 sessions of gold. prices were up a fraction today as the european central bank raised its benchmark lending rate as expected. that pushed the dollar down a little, helping strengthen gold. as erika reported earlier, june sales for retailers were pretty good. kohl's, target, and macy's each
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saw strong business last month, and each stock was up at least 5.5%. macy's gain puts it over $30 per share since late 2007. one department store not faring so well was j.c. penney. june sales were disappointing. the company cut its quarterly earnings estimate, and the stock fell more than 1%. this jump in june came when penney's announced the head of apple's retail business, ron johnson, would be joining it as c.e.o. this fall. "the wall street journal" reports his role will be limited initially to marketing and merchandise at first. teen retailers heated up. zumiez shot up 10%; american eagle and aeropostale gained at least 6% each. this final note on retailing-- credit and debit card processors visa and mastercard added about 2% each. visa expects revenue to grow about 10%, despite the federal reserve's new cap on what banks can charge retailers for accepting debit cards.
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customer services firm apac will be going private. a private investment group of j.p. morgan will buy the firm for $8.55 per share, a big premium over last night's price, sending shares rocketing up more than 55%. volume exploded, too. and that's tonight's "market focus." >> susie: the nation's housing crisis is creating a recruitment crisis for corporate america. many workers are reluctant to take jobs with new companies, or accept transfers if they can't sell their homes.
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as diane eastabrook reports the dilemma is forcing many firms to come up with new ways to attract and keep top talent. >> reporter: back in the good old days of appreciating home values, it was easier to take a new job in a new city, but not anymore. with home values tanking, many workers are thinking twice about relocating. tierney remick, global managing director for executive recruitment firm korn ferry international, says the housing crisis is creating a big challenge for corporate america. she says most firms no longer buy homes from relocating executives, so many execs are rejecting job offers if they don't think their homes will sell. that's forcing employers to get creative. >> they will, essentially, try to find a financial solution that could include a signing bonus, it could include a bridge loan, it could include temporary housing combined with some form of relocation assistance to help with the transition from one city to the next.
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housing isn't simply a problem for companies recruiting new hires; it's also a problem for companies transferring existing employees from one region to another. many firms are encouraging transferred workers to rent, instead of buy, in a new city. that's been a bonus for cort, a division of berkshire hathaway. senior sales vice president mark koepsell says the company's furniture rental business has been cashing in on the new trend. >> we'll furnish a home with everything a family needs, from furniture to kitchen appliances, dishes, soft goods, et cetera, washers, dryers-- whatever they need to just walk in with their suitcase and begin a new life in a new city. >> reporter: a few years ago, cort also launched a relocation business that helps executives find apartments or rental homes, like this mansion on chicago's north side. real estate broker camilla protto works with cort.
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she says many execs with families prefer larger homes, and now, they're not hard to find. >> i was looking in march for a house this size and i couldn't find it, and now all of a sudden, they're out there. >> reporter: experts think the booming rental market could give corporate recruitment a boost if workers are able to rent their current homes when taking on a new job in a new town. diane eastabrook, ""nightly business report," chicago. >> tom: here's what we're watching for tomorrow: three words-- jobs, jobs, jobs. the labor department issuing the june employment numbers. we'll also see may's consumer credit and wholesale trade. and if you walked away from stocks in may, is it too late to harvest any hay? our "market monitor" guest has some answers. he's sandy lincoln, chief investment strategist at bee-mo asset management. >> susie: j.p. morgan will pay $228 million to settle charges it cheated to get business from dozens of cities and counties. the securities and exchange commission says a unit of the bank rigged bids for the deals
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by looking at what its competitors were offering during the bidding process. morgan cooperated with the government's investigation, and says some former employees were to blame for the illegal moves. the bank has since closed that unit. >> tom: if you're out of work and finding it tough to make your mortgage payment, the obama administration may be able to help. starting august 1, the federal housing administration will let homeowners miss a full year of payments before starting the foreclosure process. now, it starts after three or four missed months. uncle sam launched a foreclosure program two years ago to help strapped homeowners, but the results have been less than predicted.
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>> susie: back now to our top story-- the debt talks. tonight's commentator says the contentious dialogue shows how pervasive "my way or the highway" thinking has become. he's daniel gross, columnist and economics editor at yahoo finance. >> "getting to yes." "lets make a deal." "split the difference." these clich├ęs drive the business world. but cutting deals is a skill that has suddenly vanished. an epidemic of intransigence is sweeping across the globe. i'm not just talking about the absurd situation in washington, where republicans are holding the debt ceiling hostage.
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in minnesota, a state known for its niceness, the government shut down last week because the governor and legislature couldn't come to terms on spending. the national football league, a joint venture of billionaire owners and millionaire players, can't agree on how to divide the streams of revenues from television and merchandise. a lockout threatens the season. the national basketball association is headed down the same route. meanwhile, greece and european banks are having great difficulty negotiating a settlement under which creditors would get a little less than they had hoped. it's not surprising that this pervasive zero-sum thinking is afoot in an era of slow growth. when the pie isn't growing, people cling fiercely to their slices. when you don't think there's quite as much to gain in the future, you feel like you have nothing to lose. i'm daniel gross. >> susie: and finally tonight, the median price americans pay to rent an apartment these days is just under $1,300 a month. for that same money in new york
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city, you can rent 2.5 parking spaces! a new survey shows midtown manhattan is the most expensive place in the country to park your car-- $541 a month. while that is pricey, it's peanuts compared to some other places in the world, like london. tom, you'd need almost $1,100 to park your car there. >> tom: and the cars are smaller, but you're paying a lot more money. >> susie: that's nightly business report" for thursday, july 7. i'm susie gharib. good night, everyone, and good night to you, too, tom. >> tom: good night, susie. i'm tom hudson. good night, everybody. we hope to see all of you again tomorrow night. "nightly business report" is made possible by:
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this program was made possible by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. captioning sponsored by wpbt captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
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